Featured Artists | The Philly Pops
 

Featured Artists

 

Capathia Jenkins, vocalist

Capathia Jenkins has wowed Philly POPS audiences in the past and most recently at The Philly POPS free concert on July 3rd, 2014, that was part of the Wawa Welcome America! Festival. No stranger to Broadway, she starred as Medda in the hit Disney production of Newsies, and has performed in The Civil War; The Look of Love; Caroline, Or Change; and Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me. On Off-Broadway, she was in the 2000 revival of Godspell, and also Love, Loss, and What I Wore, as well as (mis)Understanding Mammy – The Hattie McDaniel Story, for which she was nominated for a Drama Desk Award. Jenkins is an active concert artist, having appeared with orchestras around the world, including The Philly POPS, Cleveland Orchestra, Houston Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony (with Marvin Hamlisch), National Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Seattle Symphony, and several others.

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Darius de Haas, vocalist

Darius de Haas’ performances range from the Broadway stage to recordings to concert venues throughout the world. He made his Broadway debut in Kiss of the Spider Woman, followed by Lincoln Center's revival of Carousel, the original cast of Rent, and many more. His Off-Broadway, regional, touring, and premiere credits include his Obie-winning leading performance in the Pulitzer-nominated Running Man. His singular abilities and range in popular music, jazz, and musical theater have established him as a performer in a variety of settings, as well as a guest with several orchestras, including the National Symphony, The Cincinnati Pops, The Philly POPS, The Los Angeles Master Chorale, and Luckman Jazz Orchestra. Other notable performances include the concerts Too Hot to Handel at Carnegie Hall (conducted by Marin Alsop with The Baltimore Symphony), and Duke Ellington's Sacred Concert of Music at Disney Concert Hall.

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David Charles Abell, Music Director & Principal Conductor

Born in North Carolina, Music Director & Principal Conductor David Charles Abell grew up in the Mt. Airy neighborhood of Philadelphia, attending Germantown Friends School through the sixth grade. A gifted musician from a young age, his study of trumpet, viola, piano, and composition eventually led to a concentration on conducting. He attended Yale University, the Juilliard School, and the Conservatoire Américain in France, where he studied under Nadia Boulanger. At age 13, David met Leonard Bernstein while singing in the world premiere of Bernstein’s Mass in Washington, D.C. Ten years later, David assisted his teacher John Mauceri in the tenth anniversary production of Mass, leading to a close association with Bernstein—as both a conducting student and as an editor of Bernstein’s music.   

David made his debut with The Philly POPS in 2013’s Christmas Spectacular, returning again in 2014 and 2015. He has since conducted Blockbuster Broadway in 2017, Lenny’s Revolution in 2018, and will lead 2019’s A Philly POPS Christmas and 2020’s Hammerstein: The Song Is You! In addition to his work with The Philly POPS, David conducts concerts, opera, and theatre performances around the world. He has performed with such distinguished artists as Dame Judi Dench ,Dame Emma Thompson, Heather Headley, Idina Menzel, Petula Clark, Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban, and Matthew Morrison. He has conducted many prominent orchestras, including the London Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Atlanta and Cincinnati Symphonies, and Boston Pops.

David is widely known to TV audiences for the 10thand 25th anniversary Les Misérables concerts, both of which have become PBS fund-raising perennials. In the UK, he has performed many times on television, most notably as conductor of the immensely successful Sondheim 80th birthday Prom and as the conductor for four years of the Olivier Awards, the UK’s equivalent to the Tony Awards. Recently, he made his Zurich Opera debut with Sweeney Todd, starring Sir Bryn Terfel.

David currently lives in London.

Hugh Panaro

Hugh Panaro, vocalist

Hugh Panaro is perhaps best known for having played the coveted role of the Phantom in Broadway's The Phantom of the Operaover 2,000 times, including the 25th Anniversary production. In fact, Hugh is one of the few actors to be cast by Harold Prince as both The Phantom and Raoul in the show's Broadway production and is currently starring as the titular role in the immersive Off-Broadway production of Sweeney Todd.Hugh made his Broadway debut in the original production of Les Misérablesas Marius, the role he originated in the First National Company. He also created the roles of Buddy in the original Side Show (Sony cast recording); Julian Craster in Jule Styne's last musical, The Red Shoes;and the title role in the American premiere of Cameron Mackintosh's Martin Guerre. Hugh was nominated for an Outer Critics Circle Award for his performance in the title role of Elton John's Lestat, based on Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. He made his West End debut in the original London company of Harold Prince's Show Boat as Gaylord Ravenal, the role he previously played in the Broadway and Toronto productions.At the prestigious 5thAvenue Theater in Seattle, Hugh played George Seurat in Sam Buntrock's Tony Award-winning production of Sunday in the Park with George, and Robert in Stephen Sondheim's Company.Hugh's performance as Jean Valjean in the Walnut Street Theater's production of Les Misérables earned him the prestigious Barrymore Award, for which he was again nominated after a turn as Fagin in Oliver! In 2012,Hugh was honored with the Edwin Forrest Award for his long-term contribution to the theater. An active concert artist, Panaro has performed with numerous symphony orchestras including Dallas, Detroit, San Francisco, SeattleUtah Symphonies, and the London Sinfonietta, among many others. He had the privilege of performing in the world premiere of Penderecki’s Te Deumat Carnegie Hall and was a guest soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic, conducted by Marvin Hamlisch. His recordings include Jerome Kern Treasury, the original cast recording of Side Show, Tap Your Troubles Away(Herman), The Centennial(Weil), and Life On The Wicked Stage(Kern). His first solo CD, recorded with Sony/BMG, was released in the summer of 2007. In addition, he toured throughout Europe with the legendary Barbra Streisand. A native of Philadelphia, Panaro graduated from Temple University and was awarded the Boyer College of Music Certificate of Honor.

Micah Wilshire, vocalist & guitar

Micah Wilshire grew up in a musical family in Roanoke, Virginia. From age 3, he began performing in his family’s band and began playing a variety of instruments throughout childhood. After high school, Micah moved to Nashville with the intent of becoming a session guitar player and session singer. Micah became a first call session vocalist and guitarist, appearing on multiple Gold and Platinum albums and countless recordings and jingles. As a member of the band Wilshire, he moved to Los Angeles and signed with Columbia Records and Warner-Chappell Publishing. Wilshire wrote the hit single “Special” that shot up the U.S. Top 20 Billboard chart, leading to tours with Seal (nationally and internationally) and Train. Performances on Late Night, Sharon Osbourne show, Wayne Brady Show and Pepsi Smash. Since then, Micah has focused on songwriting and production. His voice continues to be featured in film and television.

Visit: micahmixer.com

Peter Richard Conte, Organist

Peter Richard Conte is highly regarded as a skillful performer and arranger of organ transcriptions. He has been featured several times on National Public Radio and on ABC television’s Good Morning America and World News Tonight. His monthly radio show, The Wanamaker Organ Hour, airs on the first Sunday of each month and can be accessed online via WRTI.org. He performs extensively throughout the United States and Canada under the management of Phillip Truckenbrod Concert Artists, and was a featured artist at the American Guild of Organists’ National Convention in 2002, and at the International Organ Festival in Aosta, Italy, in September 2004. In 2013, the Philadelphia Music Alliance honored him with a bronze plaque on the Avenue of the Arts’ Walk of Fame. He has performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, The Philly POPS, and with Delaware and Allentown Symphonies.